#Slam Africa: A Decade Later



URBAN CRAFT MAGAZINE had a brief but enlightening chat with #Slam Africa representative Ian Gwaggy (I.G) who gave us insight into the initiative itself as well as their upcoming poetry showcase. #Slam Africa, is of course celebrating 10 years in the business, and what a decade it has been for the Kenyan platform!
Below is how that conversation went


• For the benefit of our readers, can you give us a brief background into what #Slam Africa is?

(I.G)_Slam Africa is a quarterly poetry event bringing together some of the fast rising poetic talents from across the region to a contest pitting 9 poets in 3 elimination rounds of performance. The top 3 contestants qualify for a grand slam at the end of the year. Started 10 years ago as a Monthly event by Imani inc. and Spark Africa, it has produced or provided a platform for a lot of art industry practitioners as well as 61 Slam Africa champions _

• Who is the brains behind #Slam Africa and what inspired you to put together this initiative?

(I.G)_Slam Africa is run by the arts collective Creative Spills with the aim of providing a platform for young people to express themselves and articulate issues that currently affect youth growing up in Africa and the world through performance poetry._

• How has the response itself from the poets and fans been thus far?

(I.G)_There has been a massive growth within the poetry circles from page poets, performance poets, poetic bands to the audiences and poetry connoiseurs in the region. The event in itself has grown in numbers and birthed concept shows by poets who are products of the programme.

• You are working on what you have termed 'the biggest poetry concert in Kenya'. Would you mind sharing with us the particular details to that event?

(I.G)_Mufasa in concert is going to be an explosion of words, rhymes, rhythm and sounds that aim to propel the spoken word artform into a realm of dynamism and liberty of poetic expression. The show will be a 2 hour rollercoaster of performances featuring an array of artists that are featured on his upcoming project._

• What in your own words do you believe makes this upcoming event unique/special?

(I.G)_Mufasa the 40th Slam Africa Champion gets to showcase his versatility on stage as a skilled performer who has mastered the art of blending genres for live performance. The show will display the myriad ways in which peoetry can be packaged for performance and engage a live audience._

• What should poetry fans expect to see and experience on the day of the event?

(I.G)_Poetry consumers should brace themselves for a poetic sound that has never been shared before in the city and a number of collaborations that will blow their minds. And there will be dancing!_

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